Insta post...ye be warned

Our last month in Instagram:
Zumbatomic! Taught my first summer session, and had a blast. The girls can't wait until next year's.

Snuck away again to an oasis in Vegas. Beautiful.
Kept lifting weights and still enjoying it. Right now I'm at:
squats: 150x5x3
Dead lift:160x5x1
Overhead press:65x5x2
Bench press: 82x5x2
Rodney got this weird rash after being outside with daddy fixing the sprinklers?
But he got to ride the back hoe all the way to Grandpa's office. Highlight of the year.
Ty fixing said sprinklers. He even dragged me into digging the trench for my roses. It stunk, but worth it now. Hello drip system !
Ran errands and saw this sweet vintage A/C unit.
Bought flowers from our new quaint and tres chic flower shop for my dear friend.
Squished Elise's cheeks a few hundred times. I refrained from the lower set :)
Went and taught "Thriller" for Camp Mend a'Heart.
Watched cousin Mady get called to Fukuoka JAPAN! For her mission.
Went to the new children's museum!
More swimming with my favorite girls.
A 71st birthday for this beautiful mother.
And a day date in Vegas (with Rodney), for new tires. I can drive through  this hades summer in vehicular peace now.

How is your summer going?


Beating the bulking myth down....or how I started weight lifting.

Am I the only one here? But when I blog about something that is going well, I automatically sign us up for at least 6 months of struggling in that area.  It's the equivalent of bearing your testimony in church about something, oh baby. Just get ready, "hurricane a comin'!" (said like that voice from little mermaid)

So, I started something new in April. I was at my wit's end, I was working out all the time and still not getting the "results" I wanted. I kind of laugh just writing this now. I was talking with my brother and kind of unloaded on him. I am tired of not looking fit, despite working out all the time! I'm tired of being tired!  Long story short, he told me to buy this book. And try the program.

Zumba has been amazing for me and have achieved awesome results from it, but I was still missing something...else. Something that I enjoy, I love Zumba! But I'm the teacher, I can't just turn my brain off and exercise.

Now, backstory: I did not want to lift weights and have avoided it like the plague. In high school I had weight training (which, today I am forever grateful for) and the coach promised I would not BULK up, well I went to prom with a nice set of lats which I hated and believed that I was a "bulker" and should avoid all heavy weights. Then add in majoring in ballet and a body dysmorphic disorder that says skeletal thin is beautiful and you can see my issues. You're welcome.

Back to April, I was so fed up I didn't even care. I will try it out and see, I thought. So I read the book...twice. And then I started, I was intrigued because it was so simple. Basic. 3 days a week. It wasn't rushed like crossfit, it didn't require a lot of equipment. I thought, hmmmm. I wasn't expecting results when I started off, I was thinking it would take awhile to get strong. Well, I was wrong. I think Ty started noticing results in a week. I noticed after two weeks.

But here is the kicker, once I started the program, I didn't care about the aesthetic results anymore. I'm not crapping you.  I automatically fell in love with getting stronger and technique and form. I fell in love with 3 times a week, and just lifting, adding up the math, adding the weights, lifting, changing to another lift. I love that for an hour I don't care what I look like or what my butt looks like, I'm just lifting.

I don't think this program is for everyone. But I know it is for me, my entire outlook on fitness and how I "look" has changed. I could give a rat's behind whether I have "tiny" arms and legs anymore and don't cry in my pillow at night because my thighs touch. I'm glad they touch! I can lift a lot of weight with those puppies. I feel like an enormous mental burden has been lifted (no pun intended) from my life. I don't need a gimmick, or infomercial or special new workout to get me into supermodel shape anymore. I am in shape, just the way I am. And I'm just getting stronger. (insert Rocky song)

In one word, I think I can describe what heavy barbell lifting has done for me: EMPOWERMENT.

I love it, I love being a woman, I love getting strong. I love that I can lift until the day I die.

I also love the energy I get from it and the sense of accomplishment. It's a different high than I get from dancing.

I love how it has improved my cardiovascular endurance throughout the day and working out.

Oh, and fyi, even though I've had major strength gains over the last 8 weeks, my arms and legs are smaller. Go figure.

*big thanks to my brother Bill and Shelley Hancock. My virtual coaches and supporters.

**It is definitely not an attractive sport, my facial expressions and double chin never fail to impress.


the livin's easy

This summer, albeit the two weeks of it, is going great for everyone. Lots of swimming, friends, pajamas, reading, movies and late dinners and late bed times (but the kids are getting a little cranky for my liking). Aunt Sarah has been in town and thoroughly entertains the kidlets and also my need for adult female conversation.  She's been working out with me too, and that just makes us miss our Provo days together even more. She's off to WV to help out Bill and Mel, and the 4th of July is just around the corner. If you don't see us for awhile, don't worry, we are doing just fine.

*I've enjoyed reading this article about keeping families fit
*This one is helping me understand trials


father, fathers

A public expression of gratitude can sound sincere, sometimes a little overreaching. I'd like to share a little story about the fathers in my life, in a hope to express gratitude to them.

My husband, the father of my children.

When our second was in the NICU, I kind of skipped town mentally. And Ty took care of everything. He knew all the nurses, doctors, support staff, respiratory therapists, social workers. He knew the procedures, medicines, machines, and what each beep meant. He knew what the numbers should be on every read out and test. He stayed with her through every procedure in the day and then held me in his arms and cried with me at night. He was, and is a beautiful and wonderful father. And he is that because of his father and grandfathers, and great grandfathers. I am blessed with devoted fathers from his side.

My father.

For as long as I can remember, throughout the hustle and bustle of a house with 7 kids my father always managed to take care of us. Because of him I have all the talents and abilities that make my life wonderful. From shooting the moon to Carmina Burana, my life is amazingly full because of him.  But what I'm most grateful for, is every now and then, he would pull me aside, and tell me that I was beautiful. Not pretty, or cute, but... beautiful. And that has made all the difference in the world to me.

My Heavenly Father.

Although I have yet to see and meet him. I have felt his presence and know He is there, but more importantly, I know that He loves me. During trials in my life, when I am humbled enough to pray for help, the first thing He tells me is that He loves me. And that has made all the difference in my world.


24 months

The only thing constant is change, and change this little boy did. From his day of birth, to one year, to 18 months, to today. He is a little toddler boy now. He doesn't take a baba anymore (this is so sad to me), but loves his dump trucks and trains instead. His only saving grace, besides his dashingly good looks, is he is a lovable snuggly bug, and I love it.

Happy Birthday Rodney.
You are very loved.

*cake by Audrey Lytle. I had a bite, cake still tastes gross to me. blech.

Confession: Last night, after we put him down to bed, I sobbed while I folded the laundry. Yes, sobbed. My baby is two, and it is kind of breaking my heart.



Another dance year is over here at the Leavitt household. We practiced and practiced at home this last week getting ready, and let me just say, I am so glad I am not their teacher. It was not pretty. We would start the music, and oh, it was painful, painful, painful.

 "Point your foot more, " I would say.
 "I AM!" she who will not be named would shout.
"If you were, I wouldn't ask you to do it" I would emphatically exclaim (read, yell).

So, phew, it's over. Miss Amber's classes are wonderful and I highly recommend her. She is a lovely teacher and the girls love and respect her. She is also punctual, professional, organized, picks beautiful music, choreography and costumes.  If you are looking to put your daughter into dance in the valley, I suggest you look into Amber Leavitt and Ballet Classique.

With that being said, next year the girls are trying out sports because they haven't done it yet. I will dearly miss  ballet for the year, but we want them to experience sports and then choose what they like best.  We'll see how that goes, because just driving one day a week to dance almost made me claw my eyes out. Wish us luck.

*sometimes you just don't get great family photos. 
and thanks to whoever taught Phoebe how to photobomb. (Uncle Taylor?)


busy week ahead

We just finished ballet for the year. End of the school year coming full speed ahead. Plans for the summer, plans plans plans.  Let us hope some come to fruition. But today, at the end of a long Sunday, I'm wishing I was still in a hotel room with this stud. 



Last year Lucy met her goal for school and we celebrated. This  year Lucy made the same reading goal, but around Christmas, she was only 1/4 of the way there and didn't want to do it anymore. So I caved and let her read Harry Potter. She fell in love with Hogwarts and it catapulted her back towards her goal. She finally finished this week!

We had a great time celebrating last night. We are very proud of her, it took a lot of hard work and my favorite friend, tenacity. 

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